Flower Pots Repeating Pattern

Flower Pots Repeating Patternn | mamasbrush #repeating pattern #gardendesign #florals #flowersketchs #wateringcans

This fall, I jumped back into designing repeating patterns, but I wasn’t sure what to do. I thought, I dabbled, I deleted. Then I decided to set it aside and work on something for the upcoming women’s retreat. The theme for it is Come to the Garden. Pots… they seemed like they would be fun to sketch on my new digital tablet. I was still (am still) learning to use my digital tablet and Adobe Illustrator, so it was a good project for me.

Flower Pots Repeating Patternn | mamasbrush #repeating pattern #gardendesign #florals #flowersketchs #wateringcans

After a couple days of dabbling, this is what I came up with. I must say, they made me happy… still do. Please understand that I get excited any time that I try to make something and it actually looks like it might be the thing I’m trying to illustrate. And if someone else can tell what I was going for… even better. 🙂 I am still an aspiring artist in my own mind.

Then I started thinking about what I could do with them. To be honest, the retreat was no longer in my mind. Instead I started visualizing a repeating pattern. (I’ll be using them to do something for the retreat in the next couple weeks.)

I added flowers and color. I moved them around a dozen ways. Before long, I had a design. After a week of voting, not only was it in my top 10 designs, it moved into the number 2 position! That was pretty exciting! You can find my design on Spoonflower here. And see it on “real” products here. (I must say, seeing this pattern on a sheet set makes my heart smile!)

If you like my design, please consider pinning the image below or sharing it on other social media!

Flower Pots Repeating Patternn | mamasbrush #repeating pattern #gardendesign #florals #flowersketchs #wateringcans

You can find me gathering here.

Easy Watercolor Flowers YOU Can Paint

I painted these cards for a party we attended this weekend for a graduate in our church. I sat down Friday night with no inspiration of what I wanted to make. What I ended up with an hour later was easy watercolor flowers YOU can paint. I didn’t start out to make a tutorial (the party was the next day), so I don’t have pictures to share of the process, but I want to talk you through what I did, because these really are Easy Watercolor Flowers YOU Can Paint!

I painted this whole thing without a pencil drawing. This makes it easier for me because I don’t have to worry about getting the petals just right when the time comes.

Getting Started

The first thing I did was to paint yellow dots where I wanted my flowers. If you are making a greeting or verse card, give some thought to where you want your flowers, if you are practicing, just put them anywhere. They would be cute in a semi-strait line across the middle of your work space. Remember to leave space between the centers for the petals for each flower.

Let the yellow paint dry.

Adding Petals

When the centers are dry, you can begin to paint the petals. I chose a color palate ahead of time and thought through where I wanted them. I begin by painting the outline of the petals where I want them, sometimes 4 petals, sometimes 5. You can do what you like.

If the petals aren’t exactly the right size or shape, just add more paint and change them a bit (this is why I like painting with pencilwork first.) When I am filling in the color on the petals, I try to leave white spaces for a little textural interest.


While allowing the petals to dry I worked on the stems and leaves of this card. I am careful to leave a little gap between the still trying flower and the green of the stem, otherwise the colors will bleed together. I simply used the very tip of one of my size 7,8, or 9 brushes (though you could use a smaller one if you are more comfortable with it.)

I dragged the tip downward from the flower to the bottom of the card. Be careful to draw an imaginary line from the center of your flower through the petals so your stem placement is realistic. Go back and add paint to make it darker, or more water for thicker stems as needed.

Easy Watercolor Flowers YOU Can Paint -- My Creative Process at mamasbrush.wordpress.com


I first added leaves to the stemmed flowers because they are further removed from the wet paint of the petals. I chose a very traditional leaf shape and deliberately left them running off the edge of the paper and behind a nearby flower (though you need to make sure the flower it touches is dry first).

Easy Watercolor Flowers YOU Can Paint -- My Creative Process at mamasbrush.wordpress.com

For the leaves on this card, I waited for the petals to dry and added leaves coming from behind the petals. Do you see the faint leaf behind the others on the purple flower on the left? That was the original leaf for that flower and it was way too big. I added a bunch of water and tried lifting the already dry paint with a paper towel, but it didn’t lift all of it. I was a little disappointed that I’d ruined the card, but I moved ahead and added the smaller leaves instead, just for practice.

Fixing “Mistakes”

I set it aside to dry while I worked on other details, and while was working I had an idea. I decided to paint very faint large leaves all over the background of the card. I painted with a lot of water, let it sit a moment or two, then dabbed it up with paper towel. Not only was the card not ruined, it was the one I decided to use for the graduation party. When you find that you’ve made a mistake of your own, set it aside for a bit and see if you can brainstorm a way to make it part of your design. You may just like it better than your intended design! 🙂

Easy Watercolor Flowers YOU Can Paint -- My Creative Process at mamasbrush.wordpress.com

Another layer of color

When everything was dry, I went back in and added another layer of color to each of the elements. For some of the flowers I went around the edges with a darker color (see the purple flower on the bottom card). For others I made streaks of darker color coming out from the middle (the purple flower on the top card. For others still, I gave an extra layer of color on half of each petal. For the leaves, I added another layer (or two) of green on one half of the leaf. There are so many ways to do this, just experiment and see what you like!

Easy Watercolor Flowers YOU Can Paint -- My Creative Process at mamasbrush.wordpress.com

Finishing Touches

This is when I add my pen work. I usually do this the next day, since I do most of my painting late at night. The trick is to make sure your painting is completely dry! For the leaves I think a pointed version of a spiral is fun. For the petals, I trace each one twice, sometimes staying right on top of the first line, other times leaving a gap all around or even just on the end. I think this makes it look like the petals are curved around on the ends. I add some squiggly lines at the base of each petal and a spiral at the center.

My goal for these finishing touches was to make the painting cute and whimsical. If I wanted them to look a little closer to realistic, I may have used dots in the centers and simple vein like lines on the leaves. Go with what you like and have fun! Shayda Campbell once said, if I want it to look exactly right, take a picture. Painting is about giving it your own creative interpretation.

When all was said and done I added the verses I had in mind and the border. Since I was short on time, I just did a simple lettering and added the verse reference into the border as I like to do. I think it worked though. The flowers dressed it up enough and the lettering style didn’t distract from the painting or the message.

So will you try it??

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Gathering here.

Birds of Paradise

Birds of Paradise in Watercolor and pen -- repeating pattern for fabric, wallpaper, or gift wrap
Birds of Paradise Repeating Pattern

Growing up, my grandparents had this enclosed back porch area that was huge. And in it was this huge (3×3 or more I’d say) Bird of Paradise plant. Now, I was little, so whether it was real or fake, I can’t tell you, but I remember the flowers and I grew up to love them! So when Spoonflower announced their Bohemian Design Challenge, I was pretty sure I would have to do Birds of Paradise (among other non-specific greenery).

Then I decided that illustrating and painting Birds of Paradise was going to be way too hard and wouldn’t turn out right, so I thought I’d fake it with herbs. Yep… very tropical, right?

When I mentioned my decision to my husband, he was pretty sure that was not Bohemian. But it’s green, I argued. They are plants too. Still I promised him I’d take another look at the “rules” before I started my Sunday afternoon painting. Ugh. In the midst of doing just that, I just knew I had to try the “impossible” Birds of Paradise. These challenges are about stretching myself after all. So gave it a try. And I’m actually pretty happy about the way they turned out.

If you’re a voter, you can find the challenge here until Tuesday, February 26th, 2019.

Gathering here.

Hand Lettered Verse — Watercolor Rose Wreath

God looks on the heart hand lettered quote with rose wreath frame

My baby girl is turning 10 today.

It is hard to believe!

God looks on the heart hand lettered quote with rose wreath frame

We chose a rose garden theme because she is loving flowers lately, and especially roses.  I told her she can have some space in our garden for flower beds and she is so excited.  We found bulbs and seeds as presents and the promise of a Knock-out Rose bush of her very own as soon as they are in stores around here.

God looks on the heart hand lettered quote with rose wreath frame

I’ve started painting something for each of my children for their birthdays, so this is what I painted for her.  I chose 1 Samuel 16:7 because I want her to remember this important truth about beauty.

Happy birthday sweet girl!


Gathering here.

Abide in Me Hand Lettered Quote – with Illustrated Watercolor Strawberry Border

Early last year I began planning to decorate for our church’s second annual Ladies Croquet Tournament in May.  I decided on a Strawberries theme and started gathering ideas.  Then I started sketching out a few illustrations to frame as part of the centerpieces and to give as prizes to the winners.

Sadly, the event had to be canceled before I got too far into it, but I did get one of my sketches  through to completion!  (Maybe this spring I can get the others painted up.)


So when my sister had surgery in May and my mom headed down to care for her, I put together a little care basket with some of our home grown strawberry jam and syrup, some fresh strawberries and other treats and this 5×7 original.

I think it just screams spring!  It may be a snowy January day, but these strawberries make me feel the warmth of impending summer!

Do strawberries make you smile too?


Original artwork and lettering done on 140 lb. cold pressed paper with watercolor and ink.